Bloomington, Indiana: Wikis


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Bloomington, Indiana
—  City  —
City of Bloomington
Bloomington from above, looking west

Nickname(s): B-Town
Location in the state of Indiana
Coordinates: 39°9′44″N 86°31′45″W / 39.16222°N 86.52917°W / 39.16222; -86.52917Coordinates: 39°9′44″N 86°31′45″W / 39.16222°N 86.52917°W / 39.16222; -86.52917
Country United States
State Indiana
County Monroe
 - Mayor Mark Kruzan (D)
 - City 19.9 sq mi (51.6 km2)
 - Land 19.7 sq mi (51.1 km2)
 - Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
Elevation 771 ft (235 m)
Population (2007)
 - City 72,254[citation needed]
 Density 3,626/sq mi (1,400/km2)
 Metro 183,733
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 47400-47499
Area code(s) 812
Twin Cities
 - Santa Clara Cuba
 - Posoltega Nicaragua
FIPS code 18-05860[1]
GNIS feature ID 0431207[2]

Bloomington is a city and the county seat of Monroe County in the southern region of the U.S. state of Indiana. According to the 2000 census, the city population was 69,291 with a 2007 estimate of 72,254.

Bloomington is the home to Indiana University. Established in 1820, IU has approximately 40,000 students and is the original and largest campus of the Indiana University system. In 1991, Thomas Gaines, a landscape artist, published a book, The Campus As a Work of Art, in which he named the Bloomington campus one of the five most beautiful in America. Most of the campus buildings are built of Indiana limestone.

Bloomington is also the home of the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University Maurer School of Law - Bloomington, the world renowned Jacobs School of Music, the Kelley School of Business, the Kinsey Institute, The Indiana University School of Optometry, the Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing (the School of Informatics also has a branch at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis), and The Midwest Proton Radiotherapy Institute.

Bloomington has been named a Tree City for more than 20 years. The city was the site of the Academy Award-winning movie Breaking Away, featuring a reenactment of Indiana University's annual Little 500 bicycle race. Bloomington is also famous for its rock quarries, also featured in Breaking Away, which residents have been known to use as swimming holes.



A Fourth of July parade passes the Monroe County courthouse in Bloomington.

Bloomington is located at 39°09′44″N 86°31′45″W / 39.162147°N 86.529045°W / 39.162147; -86.529045.[3]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 19.9 square miles (51.6 km²), of which, 19.7 square miles (51.1 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.5 km²) of it (1.00%) is water.

Bloomington is an area of irregular limestone terrain characterized by sinks, ravines, fissures, underground streams, active steam vents, and caverns. It is situated in the rolling hills of southern Indiana. The relatively varied topography of the city provides a sharp contrast to the flatter terrain more typical of other portions of Indiana.

Just 50 miles south of Indiana’s state capital, Indianapolis, lies the city of Bloomington, also known as “B-Town”. With a population of over 71,000 residents, squeezed into just 19.9 square miles, Bloomington is the seventh largest city in Indiana


Bloomington has an unusual amount of humidity throughout the year, even in the winter. Southern Indiana receives an abundance of rain, with a yearly average of 44 inches.

Climate data for Bloomington, Indiana
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 38
Average low °F (°C) 19
Source: Weatherbase[4] March 2009


Location of the Bloomington Metropolitan Statistical Area in Indiana
Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1850 1,305
1860 2,419 85.4%
1870 1,032 −57.3%
1880 2,756 167.1%
1890 4,018 45.8%
1900 6,460 60.8%
1910 8,838 36.8%
1920 11,595 31.2%
1930 18,227 57.2%
1940 20,870 14.5%
1950 28,163 34.9%
1960 31,357 11.3%
1970 43,262 38.0%
1980 52,044 20.3%
1990 60,633 16.5%
2000 69,291 14.3%
Source: US Census Bureau

Bloomington is the principal city of the Bloomington Metropolitan Statistical Area, a metropolitan area that covers Greene, Monroe, and Owen counties[5] and had a combined population of 175,506 at the 2000 census.[1]

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 69,291 people, 26,468 households, and 10,454 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,511.1 people per square mile (1,356.0/km²). There were 28,400 housing units at an average density of 1,439.1/sq mi (555.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 70.03% White, 21.24% African American, 0.29% Native American, 5.26% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 1.10% from other races, 2.01% from two or more races, and Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.49% of the population. 22.9% were of German, 10.2% Irish, 9.1% English and 8.4% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 89.3% spoke English, 2.9% Spanish, 1.3% Korean, 1.1% German and 1.0% Chinese or Mandarin as their first language.

There were 26,468 households out of which 17.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 29.2% were married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 60.5% were non-families. 39.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.09 and the average family size was 2.76.

In the city the population was spread out with 12.7% under the age of 18, 42.3% from 18 to 24, 24.6% from 25 to 44, 12.6% from 45 to 64, and 7.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 23 years. For every 100 females there were 94.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $25,377, and the median income for a family was $50,054. Males had a median income of $32,470 compared to $26,100 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,481. About 10.3% of families and 29.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.3% of those under age 18 and 7.6% of those age 65 or over.


The Democratic Party recently has dominated city politics and has retained the mayor's office since 1972. The current mayor of the city is Mark Kruzan and the Democrats control the city council 8-1. Bloomington's liberal outlook has been influenced by the younger population which dominates much of the city, as well as the presence of Indiana University which has a reputation of having a large liberal student body.

Bloomington was the first city in the state of Indiana to ban smoking in all public and private businesses, including private clubs. It was also the first city in the state to pass an anti-discrimination ordinance protecting employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation. However, it lagged behind Indianapolis in protecting gender identity.[6][7]

Major employers

Arts and culture

[citation needed]

Bloomington has a rich and diverse performance arts culture that is home to several professional and amateur theater companies, among the most notable are: the Indiana University Dept. of Theatre & Drama, Cardinal Stage Company, the Bloomington Playwrights Project, Monroe County Civic Theater, and Theatre of the People.

Bloomington is also home to the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, which is a renovated 616 seat vaudeville and movie house built in 1922. Known locally as the "Indiana Theater" or the "Bus-Chum", it was operated until 1995 as a movie theater. In 1995, the building was donated to the community for use as a performing arts center. In 2006, the theater played host to more than 260 public performances, making it one of the busiest community theaters in the United States. Bloomington also offers artists and entertainers performance space at the John Waldron Arts Center, a unique and valued community arts center that has hosted hundreds of performances throughout the last two decades.

Bloomington is also home to a large folk punk music scene. The town is mentioned by name in many songs by Ghost Mice, and other such DIY punk bands. Plan-It-X Records has a strong affiliation with Bloomington, and Bloomington is home to the adventurous record labels Secretly Canadian, Jagjaguwar and BlueSanct. The Grammy Nominated band The Fray recorded their Triple Platinum debute album How to Save a Life at Echo Park Studios in Bloomington. The "Zine" publishing company, Microcosm Publishing, is also located in Bloomington, as is the renowned Lotus Festival of World Music, which occurs each fall.

Much of Bloomington's wealth of music originates in the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, which has for decades been among the nation's largest and most highly ranked schools of music, highlighted by its Opera Theater and public performances numbering more than a thousand each year.

Downtown Bloomington, located at Kirkwood and Walnut, offers buildings and shops filled with unique apparel as well as restaurants that introduce diverse tastes and cuisines from many cultures. Bloomington’s cultural spice comes from their sister cities; Posoltoga, Nicaragrua, Santa Clara, Cuba and Luchou Township, Taiwan.

When walking downtown, splashes of colored murals catch the eye, many were painted by the youth at Rhinos Youth Center. Rhino’s, established in 1992 by students at Harmony Education School, has a mission to support community’s youth with engaging entertainment, in a drug free environment. Another community service based organization, Habitat for Humanity, provides opportunities to help build hope in families

Live Theatre

Bloomington is home to the Bloomington Repertory Theatre Company, Cardinal Stage Company, which are professional companies; as well as Monroe County Civic Theatre and Bloomington Playwrights Project; among many others smaller Theatre producers.

Bloomington has two major performance venues, The Buskirk Chumley Theatre and the Indiana University Auditorium.


[citation needed]

  • Arts Fair on the Square
  • Bloomington Early Music Festival
  • Chocolate Festival
  • Dark Carnival Film Festival
  • EastFest
  • Fall Festival on Fairfax
  • Fourth Street Arts and Crafts Festival
  • Little 500
  • Indiana Heritage Quilt Show
  • Lotus World Music and Arts Festival
  • Pride Film Festival
  • Taste of Bloomington
  • Theta Antique Show
  • Third and High Festival
  • Weekly Farmer's Market
  • Business EXPO hosted by The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce and the SBDC

The Lotus music festival is a well-known music and arts festival. People come from around the world to view the shows filled with cultural costumes, live music, and beautiful artwork. Little 500 is a bicycle race held annually in Bloomington, and the riders take a 200 lap trip around a quarter-mile cinder track. Proceeds from donations are given to IU working students.


[citation needed]

Locally, Farmer’s Market operates every summer on Saturday. The market gives the city a chance to buy, sell, and trade goods. Another place to pick up unique items is Fountain Square Mall. This mini mall is a historical landmark because it still has bricks from the original building structure. The Square also consists of Bus Chum (the local theatre - see Arts and culture section above), the Monroe County Court House, and churches.

  • Kirkwood Avenue


Post-Secondary Education

Outside of the Monroe County school district, Bloomington is home to the prestigious Indiana University, which educates over 40,000 students.

Elementary schools

  • Arlington Heights Elementary School
  • Bloomington Montessori School
  • Childs Elementary School
  • Clear Creek Elementary School
  • Fairview Elementary School
  • Grandview Elementary School
  • Harmony School
  • Highland Park Elementary School
  • Lakeview Elementary School
  • Marlin Elementary School
  • Rogers-Binford Elementary School
  • St. Charles Catholic School
  • Summit Elementary Schools
  • Templeton Elementary School
  • Unionville Elementary School
  • University Elementary School

Middle schools

  • Batchelor Middle School
  • Harmony School
  • Jackson Creek Middle School
  • St. Charles Catholic School
  • Tri-North Middle School

High schools




Radio Stations




Bus service

  • Bloomington Transit
  • IU Campus Bus Service
  • Bloomington Shuttle Service (provides bi-hourly service to the Indianapolis International Airport. The shuttle picks passengers up at various hotels in the city as well as Indiana University's Memorial Union)
  • Catch-A-Train (provides regular service to Union Station in downtown Indianapolis and to other Amtrak stations for trains to Chicago. The shuttle picks passengers up at various hotels in the city as well as Indiana University's Memorial Union)
  • Catch A Ride (Provides express bus service from Indiana University to Chicago, Merrillville, South Bend, Ft. Wayne for key holidays, semester breaks, and select weekend trips.)

Sister Cities

Bloomington has three sister-city relationships.

Notable residents

Note: This list does not include students attending Indiana University. Please see List of Indiana University (Bloomington) people for famous alumni.

Nearby points of interest

See also


External links

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

BLOOMINGTON, a city and the county-seat of Monroe county, Indiana, U.S.A., about 45 m. S. by W. of Indianapolis. Pop. (1890) 4018; (1900) 6460, including 396 negroes; (1910) 8838. It is served by the Chicago, Indianapolis & Louisville and the Indianapolis Southern (Illinois Central) railways. Bloomington is the seat of the Indiana University (co-educational since 1868), established as a state seminary in 1820, and as Indiana College in 1828, and chartered as the State university in 1838; in 1907-1908 it had 80 instructors, 2051 students, and a library of 65,000 volumes; its school of law was established in 1842, suspended in 1877 and re-established in 1889; its school of medicine was established in 1903; the third and fourth year courses are given at Indianapolis; a graduate school was organized in 1904; and a summer school (or summer term of eleven weeks) was first held if' 1905. Dr David Starr Jordan was the first president of the university in 1885-1891, when it was thoroughly reorganized and its curriculum put on the basis of major subjects and departments. The university's biological station is on Winona Lake, Kosciusko county. Among the manufactures of Bloomington are furniture and wooden ware. There are valuable limestone quarries in the vicinity. The city was first settled about 1818.

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Simple English

Bloomington is a city in the state of Indiana, in the United States.

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